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A new study shows that lack of sleep can negatively affect your circulation. Learn about the connection between sleep and circulation.

Insufficient sleep can lead to poor cardiovascular health and a new study explains how the two are connected. According to current evidence, having poor sleep hygiene (less than 7 hours of sleep) affects both short and long-term health.

Research findings show that sleeping for less than 6 hours per night can increase your risk of atherosclerosis by 27%. In contrast, good sleep can help maintain good circulation by keeping the arteries supple.

Furthermore, research from the University of Colorado-Boulder shows how a lack of sleep promotes fatty deposit buildup in the arteries. Findings in the journal Experimental Physiology connect sleeplessness to changes in the blood levels of micro RNA, affecting protein expression. “[It] proposes a new potential mechanism through which sleep influences heart health and overall physiology,” says senior author Christopher DeSouza.

Poor Sleep and Poor Circulation

Sleep and CirculationThe study involved 24 healthy participants ages 44-62. Half of them slept 7-8.5 hours per night and the other half slept 5-6.8 hours per night. Results show that those who slept less than 7 hours had miRNA blood levels that were 40%-60% lower than the other participants. 

These miRNAs, miR-125A, miR-126, and miR-146a, suppress the expression of proinflammatory proteins. “[T]hey are like cellular brakes, so if beneficial microRNAs are lacking, that can have a big impact on the health of the cell,” says DeSouza.

The lack of these miRNAs can lead to inflammation and a higher risk of cardiovascular disease like strokes. Moreover, a previous study by DeSouza and his team shows that men who slept less than 6 hours had endothelial cells that didn’t function properly. Endothelial cells make up the lining of blood vessels like arteries and veins. Finally, this led to blood vessels being unable to function properly, reducing the body’s circulation.

Sleep and Cardiovascular Health

According to DeSouza, “it is plausible that people need at least 7 hours of sleep per night to maintain levels of important physiological regulators, such as microRNAs.” Currently, the team is working to find out if improving sleep habits can help reestablish healthy miRNA levels.

These findings corroborate previous studies that show how the quality of sleep affects different health aspects. “Don’t underestimate the importance of a good night’s sleep,” DeSouza stresses.

The Outlook

supplements for circulationIf you want to improve your blood flow and circulation, then you need to make sure you have good sleeping habits. In addition to sleeping at least 7 hours per night, there are other things you can do to benefit your circulation.

For example, you can exercise regularly, eat healthily, and take supplements like Circulation Boost. Give your blood flow the support it needs and take Circulation Boost along with a good night’s rest.